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Principal shuts down paper for flag-burning photo

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  1. Prior Restraint
A California high school principal shut down the student newspaper after it ran a front-page photo of a student burning…

A California high school principal shut down the student newspaper after it ran a front-page photo of a student burning an American flag.

Shasta High School Principal Milan Woollard called the the publication "embarrassing."

Connor Kennedy, the paper’s editor, who also wrote an opinion piece accompanying the photo, said he chose the free speech theme because he had just studied flag-burning and its protection under the First Amendment in his senior government class.

The principal said school officials had planned to shutter the paper as a cost-cutting measure even before the students published the controversial photo. This latest issue of the paper, he said, only "cements the decision."

Judy Champagne, the paper’s adviser, said she does not support the students’ actions. She said students added the photo at the last minute to create controversy.

Mike Stuart, the school system’s superintendent, said the incident reflects the students’ immaturity.